The disappointment that might have veiled PV. Sindhu’s face after settling for BWF World Championship silver medals for straight two years (2017 & 2018), transformed into tears of joy, as she stood erect to the Indian national anthem with a dream of millions around her neck. In yet another performance that would be remembered for eternities, PV Sindhu on Sunday beat the former No. 1 Nozomi Okuhara in a humiliating 21-7, 21-7 straight sets to become first Indian to win a BWF Gold.
“Finally, I have become a National champion!” she exclaimed, only to realize the blunder she has made. “Oh sorry, sorry, World Champion”, she corrected herself, trying to get habitual to the title that she has earned through sweat and blood in Basel, Switzerland.
From a viewer’s point of view, I wonder the tough day it must have been for the Ace shuttler as she – like a scene from a Bollywood-sport movie – might have had stood glaring at the court recalling past events as if they matter. Events that involve her interaction against Nozomi Okuhara in 2017 BWF final, and Carolina Marin in 2018 BWF final. The two finals she had lost to only emerge stronger.
Thankfully, the past is not just about interactions for they also entail a memory. For Sindhu, it must have been reeking out from the face of Okuhara. The face that replenishes a pulsating 2017 encounter that lasted nearly two hours and involved a 73-shot rally. The memory that had, for the first time, shattered Sindhu’s dream to become BWF Champion as Okuhara emerged victorious in the end.
A year later, deja-vu struck her wits, as she found herself yet again on the same spot, however, her opponent this time was even more ferocious. Nevertheless, Sindhu, better than before, broke the jinx this time, brushing aside Carolina Marin of Spain with a commanding show before finally losing to her. Yet again, a silver.
Hopefully, the worst thing about the past also happens to be the best. Yes, one can’t change it but could use it as a ray of daylight that guides us through our failures. And on Sunday, when Sindhu walked into the court, to finish all off in just 38 minutes, it was the new Sindhu the world was witnessing. The one that has engulfed the heart-breaking past.
The stupendously talented @Pvsindhu1 makes India proud again!
Congratulations to her for winning the Gold at the BWF World Championships. The passion and dedication with which she’s pursued badminton is inspiring.
PV Sindhu’s success will inspire generations of players.
— Narendra Modi (@narendramodi) August 25, 2019
Seeing Sindhu play today, gave us a glimpse of the hard work she has been putting to match the level of fitness she knew she would need to defeat the World’s No. 4. Sindhu (World’s No. 5) for the most part of the game stuck to a strategy of pushing the shuttle back to the opponent and smashing it hard at Okuhara whenever she got the chance to. Clearly, the plan worked for the Indian as she was able to maintain the lead throughout the two sets.
The only glimmer of hope for Okuhara was the opening rally when she took a 0-1 lead. Thereafter, Sindhu was assured that she isn’t repeating the same old mistakes, while Okuhara shell shocked as she wouldn’t have had ever expected Sindhu to be as aggressive and precise to her.
“I won for my country and I am very proud to be an Indian” She said post-match.
This is Sindhu’s fifth medal at the World Championships, which is the joint highest in women’s singles in the history of the tournament along with Xhang Ning of China, a two-time Olympic gold medallist.